Friday, January 14, 2011

Patricia Kirtley: The Woman the Golden Voice Left Behind

The development of the Ted "Golden Voice" Williams story over the past couple of weeks has been fascinating. From a homeless man on the streets of Cleveland holding a sign saying "I have a God given gift of voice. Im an ex radio announcer who has fallen on hard times...", to job offers, and a reunion with his elderly mother. It's been heartwarming to watch. Along the way I've been wondering about how his back story would play out as it came to light, and if his choices would come back to haunt him. Not surprisingly, there have been numerous mug shots, local business owners who said they had to call police to deal with him, an arrest in LA while visiting an estranged daughter, and trip to rehab. But none of that was particularly unexpected.

This morning I have read of someone who might be the real hero of the story, not of the past couple weeks, but for more than two decades. Patricia Kirtley is Williams' ex wife. She raised their four daughters, as well as a son Williams had with another woman. Patricia is partially blind. Patricia's story (link)
Patrcia Kirtley (pic source)
It's exciting to see someone give a chance to get out of a deep hole, especially a dad who totally lost the plot. But perhaps the biggest underlying themes here are the power of prayer, and how we need to be introspective and guard our own marriages. 
"My children are survivors," Kirtley told the New York Daily News. "They know if we get a little bit that God provides, we make it into a lot." Now 58, Patricia recall going on welfare to support her children with Ted. Two of her sisters and a cousin also took in children that Ted and his drug-bound girlfriend abandoned. "We prayed for him," Ted's 30-year-old daughter Julia Pullien said about the father who left when she was just 7 years old.
"As I see how my personal situation lines up with the Ted Williams and Patricia Kirtley story I have become more determined to look more closely this year at how I rub off on my wife and family and how can I address my own weaknesses to make them stronger."

Dad U

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